Gov. Beshear honors Gatton Academy

Rae Emary/Herald Governor Steve Beshear appeared at a reception held by the Gatton Academy. The reception was thrown as celebration for the academy receiving Newsweek Magazine’s Award of Best Public High School.

Yesterday, Gov. Steve Beshear said in a speech in front of the Gatton Academy that he thought he was somewhere else.

“Some of the students showed me poster boards that showed some of the research they’ve done,” Beshear said. “I thought I was at NASA or some graduate program at a university.”

Beshear attended an event honoring Gatton’s distinction of being picked as Newsweek magazine’s “Best High School in America.”

The academy started in 2007 during Beshear’s time as governor, something that President Gary Ransdell spoke of in his introduction.

“You, since day one, have been an education governor and you have supported education,” Ransdell said. “And even when you couldn’t support education, you protected education to the extent possible.”

 In Ransdell’s speech, he specifically pointed out the work of Tim Gott, director of the Gatton Academy.

Gott said he has appreciated the publicity the ranking has given the program — even if the ranking wasn’t a total surprise because Gatton was in the top five the previous year.

“Anytime you’re chosen as No. 1, it still kind of takes your breath away,” Gott said.

All of the speakers said they shared the celebration with the students, who were the biggest part of earning the rank.

“They’ve chosen to take a very challenging task and it’s one of the hardest curriculums in the state or, for that matter, nationally and, you know, it’s just nice to see positive things recognized,” Gott said.